A Different Kind of Cranberry Sauce (That’s still really easy!)
Last night, I had an early Thanksgiving dinner with some of my family since not everyone will be in town on Thursday. My aunt made her famous smoked turkey, my dad took care of the sweet potatoes and I brought the cranberry sauce. I’d never made cranberry sauce before, so when I was browsing through recipes, I was shocked at how simple they were! Cranberries, sugar, water… that’s it! But I wanted MORE!
What I found was a beautifully simple dish that was the perfect balance between sweet and tart. You start with ripe Bartlett pears, peeled and grated. Because the pears are naturally so sweet, very little sugar is added to the recipe, which was an added bonus. Some freshly grated ginger adds a spicy kick and a cinnamon stick finishes off the well-rounded flavor. I really liked the consistency too. Everything boiled down nicely to a thick sauce without being watery.
There’s so much to fuss over for Thanksgiving and I see no need to overcomplicate something that’s so purely simple and flavorful. This was done in 30 minutes flat and just required some light stirring throughout. My one warning is that it really boils down. The recipe I followed said that it would feed six people, but I thought it was pretty meager. I’ve adjusted the recipe below to reflect heartier portions. My family tends to treat cranberry sauce as more of a side than a garnish, but if just like to drizzle some on top, you can adjust accordingly.
6 ripe Bartlett pears
1 1/2 C. water
2 C. fresh cranberries, washed and picked over
2 Tbs. sugar
2 tsp. grated ginger
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cinnamon stick
Peel pears and grate using the largest grating holes. Add to large saucepan with remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for 30 minutes. Make sure to stir throughout to avoid burning or sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Serve warm or at room temperature.